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Day 122 - Galatians 5

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

5 minutes a day 5 days a week All the New Testament in a year

One Woman Man

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Titus 1:6 speaks of "the husband of one wife".

Can a divorced brother who is remarried be referred to as “the husband of one wife” and thus be ordained as a deacon?  His wife is also a divorcee.

Please help; I am confused!

Sincerely, Choosing Wisely

Dear Choosing Wisely,

He may be qualified; he may not – your congregation will need to properly judge whether he fulfills the requirements of Tit 1:6. The phrase ‘husband of one wife’ literally means a ‘one woman man’ in the Greek. He must be devoted exclusively and faithfully to his one wife. A man who is widowed and then remarried could still be properly described as a ‘one woman man’ because he was completely devoted to his first wife until her death, and now is fully devoted to his current wife.

The question you will have to wrestle with is if this divorced brother has shown the character trait of monogamous fidelity. Why did he get divorced? Was it for infidelity? Was he always faithful to her? Did she leave him, or did he leave her? How does he behave with his current wife? How long has he been married to his current wife? The answers to these questions will help you to assess whether he is a faithful ‘one woman man’.

You are right to be concerned about him serving as a deacon. Divorce is a red flag that should make us pause before appointing a man as a qualified deacon, but depending on the circumstances surrounding his divorce, he may still be qualified.

Day 121 - Galatians 4

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

5 minutes a day 5 days a week All the New Testament in a year

God Is Alive

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

How can I know that God really exists?

Sincerely, The Wonderer

Dear The Wonderer,

I could spend pages answering your question. The most difficult part of your question is trying to summarize the thousands of evidences for God’s existence. Please consider the following list as an abridged look at the topic.

Top 5 Reasons There is a God

  1. The world was either created, or it came from nothing. If we are created, then there is a Creator. Consequently, one of the most basic rules of science is that something never comes from nothing (see an explanation of the first law of Thermodynamics here). The energy that exists in our universe had to come from somewhere.
  2. Life never comes from non-life. All living things come from other living things. There is no such thing as spontaneous generation. Evolution teaches the opposite. Evolution states that all living creatures descend from one-celled organisms that were randomly created from inorganic material billions of years ago. That is scientifically impossible.
  3. Life is complex. Complexity requires design - and consequently a Designer. Blood cells, dragonflies, oak trees, giraffes, etc. are all IMMENSELY complex and intricate things. It doesn’t make sense to say that they were randomly formed – they have far too much design.
  4. Humans feel shame. Shame and guilt are uniquely human conditions that make no sense from an evolutionary standpoint. If we evolved to survive, and only to survive, there would be no reason for humans to have ethics. Why would we care about right and wrong unless we were created by a Creator who instilled these beliefs in us?
  5. Humans hunger for religion. As a rule, human beings are religious. We crave spiritual knowledge and eternal wisdom. We often seek it in all the wrong places, but the fact still remains that we desire eternal purpose for our lives. A case can be made that there is nothing that we desire that can’t be fulfilled. We hunger; there is food. We thirst; there is water. We want companionship; there is the opposite gender. You are incapable of having a desire that cannot be slaked. This is more of a philosophical argument, but it can be argued that since we all seek God – God must exist.

I can guarantee you that I did not even begin to do the subject of proving God’s existence justice. If you would like to look at the issue in-depth, I recommend going to www.answersingenesis.org to get further scientific evidence for God. I also recommend the books Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel and Icons of Evolution by Jonathan Wells. And last but not least, I highly recommend the movie Expelled featuring Ben Stein. All of these resources will provide you with an intimate and compelling argument that God most definitely does exist.

Catholics or Christians?

Monday, June 15, 2015

 

A few weeks ago you answered a question about inter-faith marriages.  You listed four possible outcomes to the described situation; three of which you labeled as "BAD" and only one as "GOOD."

The first two outcomes are below:

  1. She eventually converts and obeys the gospel, becomes a christian, and is saved (GOOD).
  2. You eventually convert and obey the Catholic church, and you are both lost (BAD).

Your response implies that Catholics are not Christians and that Catholics are not saved.  I realize that there is only one truth, but many denominations obey the gospel.  Truth is not limited to one denomination.

Where in the Bible do you find that there is only one church that is "properly" Christian?

Sincerely, Accepting Our Differences

Dear Accepting Our Differences,

Where in the Bible do you see there being more than one church that is properly Christian? The burden of proof lies upon those who wish to add churches to God's design. Paul said there was only one church, one doctrine, and one God (Eph 4:4-5). Jesus always referred to His church, not His churches (Matt 16:18). Jesus is head of the church – one head, one body (Eph 5:23). The truth is nobody even fathomed the idea of anything but one church in the first century.

When you write that ‘truth is not limited to one denomination’, you treat that assertion as an established fact… when in reality the opposite is true. Multiple religions are condemned in the New Testament. Any practices other than New Testament practices are condemned (2 Thess 2:15). Christians are warned against warping, altering, and perverting God’s established teachings for His church (Gal 1:6-9, Rev 22:18-19). Furthermore, we are promised that many will claim to have served Christ in this life and will be turned away as false Christians on the Judgment Day (Matt 7:21-23).

The practices of the New Testament church are laid out simply in the New Testament. Any congregation that wants to serve Christ need merely look at the church of the Bible and mimic its behavior (see our post here for further details on finding a faithful church). If a congregation wants to ensure its place as part of Christ’s body, it must submit to Christ’s teachings alone. There can be no man-made creeds, no human ideas and theologies, no statements of faith – just the Bible.

The Catholic church is not the same as Christ’s church, therefore Catholics are not Christians. The Catholic church accepts the pope as it’s head, placing his authority above the Bible. Their practices fit perfectly with Paul’s definition of what false religion looks like: forbidding marriages and abstaining from certain foods (1 Tim 4:1-3). Catholic priests expect to be called ‘father’, a practice in direct contradiction to the Scripture (Matt 23:9). The church of the Bible looks nothing like the Catholic church – you cannot be both a Catholic and a Christian.

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